Sick of taking notes? Nuance DAX can help you “just listen” during patient interactions.
Everyone loves a good listener.
Mokarroma Sharmin, MD, Family Medicine Specialist at WellSpan Health in Central Pennsylvania, is a great listener. Despite a practice schedule that has her seeing up to 30 patients of different ages and backgrounds every day, Dr. Sharmin listens actively as a point of principle to each patient’s story, connecting with them as best she can.
But Dr. Sharmin used to worry that the requisite note taking she had to do during patient visits distracted her attention from the person in front of her—and that they could sense this. “As a patient,” Dr. Sharmin says, “I would feel better if my doctor was looking at and talking to me, instead of splitting time between the computer screen and my face.”
To address concerns from physicians like Dr. Sharmin, WellSpan Health began using the Nuance Dragon Ambient eXperience (DAX) technology in its Family Medicine practice. DAX is an AI‑powered, voice‑enabled, ambient clinical intelligence (ACI) solution, hosted on Microsoft Azure and designed to enhance quality of care and the patient experience, increase provider efficiency and satisfaction, and improve financial outcomes across practice specialties.
DAX works by unobtrusively capturing the dialogue between physician and patient at the point of care. With a patient’s consent, DAX records conversations as they happen in the exam room or during virtual interactions. It then utilizes AI to convert what was said into clinical notes containing all pertinent details.
This allows physicians to give their undivided attention to patients during face‑to‑face interactions, helping them feel “listened to” and at ease. In this way, DAX restores a measure of intimacy and trust to physician‑patient interactions that is too often lost with today’s crush of documentation demands. It also allows for more efficient interactions, in terms of both time and substance.
It is important to know that DAX can do much more than a virtual or personal scribe. Among its many capabilities, the solution can:
- Capture multi‑party conversations ambiently using a mobile app
- Distinguish between “small talk” and clinically relevant dialogue
- Create comprehensive and compliant clinical documentation
- Integrate with electronic health records to streamline workflows
- Scale to a healthcare organization’s needs
Results from WellSpan show the potential of DAX to not only enhance the efficiency of physician‑patient interactions, but to also expand access to care to more patients. After implementing DAX at WellSpan:
- 97% of patients said their physicians were more focused, personable, and engaged
- 80% of physicians said they could see more patients
- Average wait times to see a physician decreased by 9 minutes
These statistics align with the experience of family medicine physicians like Dr. Sharmin. She noticed an immediate, positive impact on patient satisfaction after implementation of the pilot program. Her patients did not feel rushed during their interactions. In fact, they felt more connected with Dr. Sharmin and able to discuss multiple issues related to their medical health.
The richness of these patient interactions did not come at the expense of time. Quite the contrary: the length of Dr. Sharmin’s encounters with patients actually grew shorter. Every minute of every visit counted for more.
Because of results like these, the WellSpan Health family medicine practice has been able to accept a greater number of patients and is providing higher quality care based on patient satisfaction reporting. “The [DAX] product has improved our workload and our patient encounters to the upper level of satisfaction,” Dr. Sharmin said. “DAX will help to open us up to more patients—that is the main goal of having DAX in our practice.”
WellSpan Health is now expanding the use of DAX across its organization, hoping to replicate the success of its Family Practice. The solution has been deployed to Primary Care, Ob/Gyn, Podiatry, Urology, Urgent Care, and Cardiology. The 2,600 physicians across WellSpan are looking forward to listening closely to their patients—and the results of this rollout.
“WellSpan is another excellent example of the growing number of healthcare innovation leaders that are adopting Nuance ambient clinical intelligence technology as part of a comprehensive strategy to increase care quality and access, improve patient experience and physician satisfaction, and take major steps forward to alleviate physician burnout,” said Diana Nole, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Healthcare at Nuance.